Okay, we almost never do previews, but for once we’ve decided to break our own rules. The reasoning is simple: the first two scenarios for Achtung! Cthulhu: Zero Point will only be released in print in January, but both are already available as PDF downloads. We haven’t been able to play the campaign yet, but have flipped through both PDFs and are impressed by what we have seen so far.
Three Kings – Zero Point Adventure 1 and Heroes of the Sea – Zero Point May 1940 are two stand-alone adventures which are also part of an overarching campaign set at the backdrop of early World War II. Both stories obviously use the Cthulhu mythos created by gothic horror writer H.P. Lovecraft, but each will be appearing in 3 different formats: one which uses the Call of Cthulhu (sixth edition) rules set, one for Trail of Cthulhu and one based on the Savage Worlds mechanic. The stories are essentially the same, but we commend Modiphius for not cramming all three rules sets in each book, as a lot of RPG companies used to do in the past (and sometimes still do). This way, you can just buy the book that fits your favorite system, without having to pay for – or ignore – any redundant pages.
Both scenarios assume the Player Characters belong to the military and present 4 pre-generated characters that fit that angle – 1 or 2 short for many bigger RPG troupes. However, much to author Sarah Newton’s credit, she adds two alternative approaches that allow players to either use spy characters or more traditional Call of Cthulhu personas – usually meaning academics and researchers.
Three Kings is set in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, the new moniker for a large part of Czechoslovakia ever since Hitler has issued a statement out of the Prague castle proclaiming that the area would become part of Greater Germany. Emil Hacha, the former president of Czechoslovakia, seems to be in charge in name only, as it is assumed that the Nazis are in control through the brand-new Reichsprotektor Konstantin Von Neurath. All political parties have been abolished and the legal status of the local Jewish populace has been withdrawn. However, the British intelligence has gotten wind of strange activities going on in castle Karlstein, where the Nazi’s are conducting horrible scientific and medical experiments on living test subjects. Needless to say, the PCs are sent to the area to find out what’s going on and to make contact with a new resistance movement called the Three Kings…
Heroes of the Sea is set about a year after the events in Three Kings. 300.000 armed forces belonging to the British Expeditionary Force and their allies are trying to retreat to Dunkerk. The mission has been dubbed Operation Dynamo, but according to new information, the Germans already have their own mission in place designed to thwart the Allies’ plans. It is supposedly called Fall Nadel (‘Operation Needle’) and the PC’s are sent in to penetrate enemy lines and make contact with a spy called Agatha Marcham, whose code name is WOTAN.
One can hardly emphasize enough how beautiful both adventures look. They’re in full color, even though you get a print friendly version as well if you buy and of the PDFs. Expect some great artwork, a lot of maps and a lot more. Author Sarah Newton has obviously done her research, whilst the art by Dim Martin and the layout by Michal E. Cross is nothing short of beautiful. If you would like to find out how good both adventures really are, and how relevant all of the additional data is, please stay put for our upcoming January/February issue and updates! We’ll publish full reviews as soon as we’ve read the ‘printed’ versions, but truth be told, we are pretty sure that this is a great campaign!
[5 of 5 Stars!]